So this last (long) weekend I attended Crimefest in Bristol and had the most bonkers and brilliant time. Alongside good blogging friend Christine (and with a killer question from Vicki and Lisa often hanging out too) I managed to interview a whole pile of my favourite authors and we went to some killer panels so look out for some fascinating stuff coming soon on our blogs. But for now I want to post my personal highlights of the weekend and if you pop over to Christine’s place HERE you can see hers too.
Panels Panels Panels…and so much more. Crimefest 2016 Highlights.
I went to many terrific panels, featuring a plethora of fantastic authors, talking about a myriad of interesting things, often with a lot of laughs, always with a lot of insight and genuinely engaging throughout. A full report on all of those will be done as a separate feature later from me but here are a few of my favourite bits of the entire trip.
LOOK Matthew Blakstad, Corrie Jackson and Sanjida Kay – A panel full of new blood and 3 books I adored (Sockpuppet, Breaking Dead and Bone by Bone) . Read them if you have not already. And if you dare…
I’ve recently discovered that William Ryan is an enigmatically fantastic writer but I soon discovered he’s a pretty good public speaker too. This was a fascinating panel (not just because of Mr Ryan but he was the reason I went so he gets this picture) and I’ll definitely be talking about this one more in the later post…
Most hilarious event definitely goes to these guys – including a baptism of fire for Hugh Fraser on his first ever panel, the brilliantly witty Kevin Wignall presiding and my favourite lady Emma Kavanagh mostly trying not to laugh hysterically. She didn’t always succeed….
An entirely fascinating panel on novels set in times gone by, and I’ll do the important stuff in the panel post, but an enduring memory of this one will be Rod Reynolds (Author extraordinaire) beginning a sentence with “This is going to sound wanky” Yes indeed. (Giggle)
I spent a lot of time with my good friend and uber author (Willow walk is intensely brilliant) Susi Holliday this weekend but I’m sorry to say most of that is redacted to protect the innocent…. anyway moving on, her panel was brilliant (again more on that in the later post) although in this picture she and Matthew Frank DO look as though they are having a slight disagreement. They were not but it does make this one of my favourites snaps.
Then of course Christine and I interviewed many authors (not all pictured here but trust me they will be when their interviews run) Here’s a selection for now or we’ll be here all day.
THE David Young! Yes Yes I’ll review Stasi child soon NO REALLY (Fantastic book by the way everyone read it!)
With Paul Hardisty (who was incredible in his interview, so utterly open and entirely engaging) and its possibly I *may* be swooning just a little here….
Rod Reynolds was our last interview of the weekend hence the “run over by a truck” look here but he still managed to somehow be extraordinarily intelligent in his answers. Not sure how that happened. He’s a better man than I…
But THE highlight of Crimefest 2016 for me?
Well THIS of course….
Way back in January when the original “Making A Murderer – YOU decide” post went live on the blog and became the best viewed post of all time in pretty much under 60 seconds I thought it would be fantastic if this incredibly intelligent pair of lawyers turned crime writers could have a wider audience, so huge points to Angela and Orion Books for making it happen in a genuinely fantastic event. I was on the jury (the best fun) and it was standing room only with a lot of disappointed people outside the room as Neil White and Steve Cavanagh went head to head on the Steven Avery case once more. I’ve got some great pictures which I’ll save for the featured blog post and I’m happy to say the lovely Mr White is going to jot down some thoughts on the experience for me so that should be entirely brilliant (no pressure Neil)
So that is THAT. Much more to come of course over the next couple of weeks but hey, that was a taster and if you get the chance to attend next year, I would not hesitate.
To finish on an aroundabout note in which they say the best things happen in the bar…..
I drank a lot of gin, I can tell you, in the in between the books times but I think this is possibly the drink that I loved the most out of the ones I was presented with. Although it was slightly challenging to drink…yes yes YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!
Watch this space for more CRIMEFEST reporting….VERY soon.